tv BBC World News WHUT January 14, 2010 7:00am-7:30am EST
>> union bank has put its financial strength to work for a wide range of companies, from small businesses to major corporations. what can we do for you? >> and now "bbc world news." >> this is bbc "world news" today. haiti searches for survivors after the devastating earthquake. from the air, a picture of a flat city. hundreds of thousands of bodies on the streets. survivors walking to find food and water. >> now we have somebody here.
>> we cannot find him. >> there's no water, no electricity, and no telephones. international aid is trickling in, but it is taking time to reach those in need. >> president obama said to unveil plans to claw back $100 billion from america's financial center. >> it is midday in london, 7:00 a.m. in washington, and a second day of searching for survivors began in port-au-prince. haiti's president has talked about 50,000 people have been lost their lives. this is the scene from port-au- prince. a temporary camp has been set up on a soccer field by displaced
people. more aid flights are expected to arrive. the red cross says up to 3 million people may need humanitarian help. from the capital, port-au- prince, here is matthew price. >> this is the momen when the earthquake hit, a moment when the city held its breath, a moment that destroyed so many lives. in places, there's barely anything left of the city. so far, the people are largely having to cope on their own. for some people, the only hope is to dig with their bare hands. as with every earthquake, this is a race against time. large parts of this country are inaccessible at the best of times, and so it is proving very difficult to get accurate figures on how many have been injured, and how many have been killed by this massive earthquake. there is one certainty.
that is that haiti needs international aid, and it needs it very quickly. several flights came in today, but the people here are hoping for many more in the coming 24 hours. >> at the airport, we found some aid trickling in. the buildings have been damaged, but not the runway. that is at least something. many of those who can't are leaving. this group of christian missionaries have waited all day for their flight out. they each have their own story to tell. >> i was inside a home. started shaking very hard. the ground was shaking so hard that i could not move. my body was paralyzed. i was running into the walls. right before i walked out of the house, a bunch of bricks fell right in front of me. it was very scary. >> millions are left behind in the country that can barely function even without a
disaster. it is estimated that tens of thousands of peoe have been killed. many of the u.n. peacekeepers stationed here are also among the dead. this country, so often forgotten by the world, now needs its help more than ever. matthew price, bbc news, haiti. >> david has an update from matthew in port-au-prince. says the rescue teams have started to arrive, but there are not enough supplies. >> i was at the airport four hours ago. there were several flights on the ground. one of which was getting unloaded by volunteers from u.s. aid. there is some aid getting in. i have heard of four or five planes flying overhead. i assume that they have landed and i assume they are bringing in aid.
those are the only flights we believe are cleared for landing at this time of night. there is not a large influx at the moment. there is some aid coming in, but much more is needed. >> it is the middle of the night now. it is difficult to do anything constructive in terms of the victim's. >> yes, david, the important point from what i have seen -- there is a tremendous feeling at this stage that people are having to fend for themselves. they're sitting in the hospitals. i have just seen some shocking scenes in hospital here. some of the injured were brought in from the earthquake. they have subsequently died. they're dead bodies are lying next to the living in the hospital. they are not getting the treatment they need because of a lack of doctors, the lack of medicine, and the lack of any kind of facilities. some of those people -- i am not
a medical expert -- i assume they will die in the coming hours or days from injuries they should not die from. broken legs and that sort of thing. >> in terms of the hospital, it is it untouched? are they able to offer the hospital as a hospital proper, or is it part of the damagfrom the earthquake? >> from what i have seen, and i have not yet been to the worst affected areas, it is not the case that every building is level. its not the case that there is no electricity. where i'm talking to you from at the moment, a hotel in port-au- prince, there is electricity. it has been constant all evening. it is still functioning. plenty of buildings are still in that state, although, there are large parts that do not have electricity. >> rescue efforts are emerging. an american aid worker was
trapped for 10 hours under the rubble of her mission house before she was rescued by her husband who drove 100 miles to port-au-prince to find her. >> when the ground began to shake, julia was buried in an avalanche of concrete and steel, but very much alive. she managed to call her husband, frank. he was 100 miles away. he drove as fast as he could. he arrived just in time. her hand was barely sticking out of the rubble. he described what he saw to cbs. >> i saw her waving her hand. i could not see her whole body. i heard her voice. i could not hold it together. she was justaying, ust get me out of here." >> he dug her out, brick by
brick. her father said the family feels blessed. >> she was rescued out of the wreckage. it is a big thing. they are an aand amazing couple of people. >> an amazing story. much of the rescue effort has been carried out by friends, family, and those still trapped under the rubble are asking their families to help the. international rescue teams have now arrived. now a look at e world's response. >> plane loads of rescuers and relief supplies have started trickling in. united states has sent the biggest rescue teams. they have pledged funds. a few planes have already landed in haiti. american naval ships are on their way. getting to where help is most
urgently needed is not easy. much of haiti's infrastructure is in ruins. debris and collapsed buildings are a major obstacle. >> we are going to need water, food, and medicine. there are a lot of people injured who have not yet found all of the people buried under their houses. as we continue with this work, we will need a lot of medication and a lot of help. >> world bank has announced $100 billion of emergency aid. the red cross has begun a $10 million appeal. given the extent of the devastation, that is not enough. according to former u.s. president bill clinton -- >> i have been working in heartbreaking circumstances like this for three decades now. what we need now is food, water, supplies, first aid, and
shelter. >> halfway across the globe, more expressions of sympathy. foreign ministers of southeast asian nations led the support and funds. resourceful nation's work hard to be seen to be helping haiti. on the streets of port-au- prince, the situation remains grim. for many on the ground, to prevent more deaths, it is quite literally a race against time. >> we do have a new satellite picture of port-au-prince. look at the extent of the devastation wrought by the earthquake. this is the center of the capital. the white building to the right is the presidential palace. you would have thought it would have been one of the best buildings in the area, but it sustained heavy damage. nearly all the buildings around it have collapsed. there are reports of the united nations building, hospitals,
schools and many others have collapsed. these are the pictures we are getting in from the airport. this is a makeshift camp that has been set up by displaced people at a soccer field near the airport. aid flights are starting to land. remarkably, theunway did not suffer too much damage. the flights are able to land. desperate pictures of people walking around, looking for food and water, and waiting for help. people around the world are desperately trying to contact loved ones in haiti. our guest joins me from our washington bureau. john, have you managed to talk to friends and family in haiti? >> yes, i have reached a few. i'm still waiting to hear from others. i have an uncle i have not been able to reach. i had an aunt who unfortunately
died in the earthquake. and many other relatives. we are getting information secondhand and third hand about them. >> when we see these pictures devastation, the pictures we just saw of port-au-prince -- to come from a country that discards from so many other things. we have heard from other people that haiti feels like a country that is cursed. how do you respond to that? >> haiti has had an incredible stroke of bad luck for most of its history. e worst things that can happen to happen. in the fall of 2008, haiti was heit by four hurricanes in a row. it never got a chance to recover from one win another one came through. this earthquake came at a time when many of us who live in the united states or other countries
and wondered how far down haiti could fall. it seemed that the government had been fairly ineffective. it did not seem to have a vision of how to rebuild the country after all the disasters. it seems to be that haiti suffers from a an incredible streak of bad >> >luck. >> do you think that the country can turn the corner? >> it can, if there's a lot of care taken in how the aid is applied. we've had a lot of aid come to haiti and it disappears. there's been a lot of corruption. there has been a lot of misguided programs. there's never been much coordination of aid. you have dozens or hundreds of different missionary groups,
aid groups that come to haiti. unlike other countries that have a more sophisticated infrastructure, there is no coordination. all of the aid that has come to haiti has been very independent, and sometimes contradictory and conflict in. i think there is a chance to rebuild port-au-prince. it had 10 times the maximum population. when i was a boy in port-au- prince, it had a population of 150,000 people. now it is commonly said that there were two million people living there. there is a way to rebuild in the way that cities like new orleans had a chance to rebuild, and paris 200 years ago when the slums were torn down. i do not think haiti needs grand
boulevards like that, but some basic infrastructure, and may be moving the boundaries of the city. the earthquake could be a blessing in disguise. >> thank you. let's look at some of those concerns, especially the coronation of the aid effort. david is waiting to get into haiti. he joins me on the line from the neighboring dominican republic. what is the status of the coronation? >> the dominican republic -- has become the holding area for the international aid effort. there are two u.s. heavy rescue teams on the ground. they have the potential to get deep into buildings and take out survivors, if they confine them.
there are very few countries in the world with this classification. i'm traveling with the u.k. have the rescue team. they are bringing all sorts of very sophisticated equipment to try to find life under collapsed buildings. alongside me, two dogs. they're the best way of spotting life. they're able to find life bodies buried quite deep under buildings. there are spanish teams arriving to get there are teams from the neighboring latin american countries. they're all coordinating in the dominican republic before going to haiti. it is not just finding survivors. we have seen people on the ground with no food, no water.
disease is spreading quickly. disease and starvation are the next threat for those people who five survive. >> thank you. communications in and out of haiti have been difficult. there is some communication happening on online sites like wintetwitter. the last aftershock was short, but there are thousands homeless and help was on the streets. one person says on twitter -- i assume everyone is sleeping outside somewhere. i look at the sky and the stars and it seems like nothing is wrong. there's more to come during this program on the situation in haiti. you can follow all the latest of elements at our web site, bbc
.com/news. we are getting updates from our corresponden on the ground. as we just heard from twitter, ordinary people in haiti are telling their story as well. let's bring you uto-date with some of the other top stories. the pakistani taliban has denied their leader, hakimullah mehsud, was killed in a u.s. missile attack. officials say at least 10 militants died in the north waziristan region. the taliban spokesperson says that hakimullah mehsud was in the area, but left before the atck. an explosion in a crowd of marketers in southern afghanistan has killed 16 people. it is not yet clear whether the attack was a suicide bombing. the president of venezuela has
reversed his decision to ration electricity in the capital. the move follows an angry public opposition. power cuts will still apply to the rest of the country. the energy minister has lost his job over it. china says foreign internet firms acting within the law and are welcome to do business in the country. this is one day after google threatened to leave china for the hacking attempts into much censorship. this is bbc "world news" today. we have the latest on the situation in haiti. we will talk to the country's former prime minister. >> about four million people in haiti are living outside, waiting desperately for news. >> after leaving home, many people end up here. they sing here.
they comseeking a better life. never has the need been as great as now. first, they want to know that their families and friends are a life. this community health center has received visitors all day. they're anxious for news. it has for chile no contact with anyone in the country, and little information -- it has virtually no contact with anyone in the country, and little information. he is in touch with sister stations in e u.s., but they all struggle for firsthand news. >> it is very difficult right now. the communication has been hit badly. >> in the absence of information, people do what they can. several haiti associations are working together, and they are working on for funds.
some intent to fly to haiti themselves. this man wants to go to try to find his parents and other relatives. >> i can be sitting here thinking and thinking, but what can i do? nothing. if you are here, you feel powerless. the only thing you can do is fly there. if i have a chance, iill try. >> france h been quick to send aid. it has strong links to haiti historically. many people here are getting mobized themselves. >> this is bbc "world news" today. people in haiti set up makeshift camps after the earthquake that
killed tens of thousands of people. hundreds areof thousands are still trapped. there's still no coordinated aid plan. the former prime minister of haiti currently based in brussels and joins us. thank you for joining us. i know this is a difficult time forou. it's been hard for you to reach family and friends. have you managed to get through? >> i have not managed to get through myself, but fortunately, yesterday i got the news that my husband is alive. i got the positive news about one of my close friends. i this morning, i've also heard bad news. i have three people that i know very well, some friends,
who have passed away. >> we send our condolences to them. it's been easy to portray haiti as a country with little infrastructure. can you give us a sense of what systems are in place? what does exist in terms of government and resources? >> at the moment, the un troops are there. i have heard that there have recently been efforts to rebuild some infrastructure. one year ago, we had four fligoods in less than one month. that means that a lot of things were destroyed. the program has been putting a lot of the infrastructure back. this time, again, we have been
hit by nature. this situation is even worse than before. the national palace and some political institutions have also collapsed. that means it will make it even more difficult to start back working and so on. at the moment, i think the priority is to try to save lives. we want to get to those people who are still trapped and provide them the medical help that is needed. the next priority is to try to see what we can provide to those people who have lost everything. it is to provide them something. i hope that is not just something temporary, or ina
tent. that can be done for the moment. it's important to try to provide people with a safer place. probably not only in port-au- prince. >> give us a sense of your people, who they are, and how they will survive this tragedy. >> i think the people will try to survive with what they have. and also, response from the immediate family. we have a large family. not many people only take care of daughters and sons and fathers and mothers. that mea that usually people take care of cousins and other
relatives. if people just turn to the closest family or friends that they know -- those are the people who will provide walls and food, whenever it is possible. most of the people are very poor anyway. those people will need help themselves. >> thank you very much for joining us from brussels. we wish you all the best. thank you for joining us on bbc "world news." >> funding was made possible by the freeman foundation of new york, stowe, vermont, and honolulu. the newman's own foundation. the john d. and catherine t. macarthur foundation. and union bank.
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